The Rum Diary, Gonzo Journalism and Hunter S.


There comes a point in every one’s life where they discover Hunter S Thompson and GONZO journalism, it’s a right of passage almost. Mine came a couple of years back when my older brother bought a dvd called, ‘Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas’, this is usually the case for everyone. Not only is this one of the great films of all time but it put me onto Thompson’s other works as well as one of my favourite Illustrator, Mr Ralph Steadman. Their combination of writing and illustration go hand in hand. No one other than Steadman could of conveyed the madness of Thompson’s mind but that’s for another time.

It was two years ago when I was in America teaching rock climbing at a Summer camp in Casco, Maine, that I read many of Thompson’s books; ‘Hell’s Angels’, ‘Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 72’ and ‘The Rum Diary’. Whilst reading them I found myself almost in the novel as the protagonist, which is the beauty of Gonzo journalism. Instead of with holding from the action, you submerse yourself right in the middle of it and embrace all that comes with it, with Thompson that usually was drugs and alcohol, and record the experience/event as it is happening.  The books are quite gripping and sometimes shocking, but god damn are they good.

Well you can imagine my excitement when I heard that they are making a film version of ‘The Rum Diary’, this year. Thompson loyalist Johnny Depp will be the lead role for the film alongside him will be Aaron Eckhart and Giovanni Ribisi. Directing will be lead by Bruce Robinson. I cannot wait for this to come out. Shall be epic, hopefully. Apparently the film was meant to be made a while ago but the things didn’t go to plan which lead to Thompson to send this correspondence to the production company at the time, ‘ The Shooting Gallery. The furious written rant to Sorensen’s studio who had acquired the rights to the film. Progress had been slow and confused on their part. So slow in fact that Thompson reached boiling point.

RIP Dr Hunter S Thompson.

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